On November 6th, I voted in the 2012 Presidential election. If you had asked me on November 4th if I were planning on voting, I would have laughed. Right in your face.
I live in Texas, an overwhelmingly Red state. And although I live in Dallas county (a Blue county), my measly little vote wasn’t going to accomplish jack in the grand scheme of things. Hooray Electoral College.
So I had my mind all made up. My family supported my decision, my friends and coworkers supported my decision, and nearly everyone I interacted with in my immediate physical/geographical area seemed to be on the same page as me. Voting is useless/a waste of time/useless. Yes, I know I said “useless” twice.
I started to have doubts when the lovely Kristen posted this picture on Facebook:
Geez Kristen… way to guilt-trip me. And using my lady parts, too! Not cool.
So, late on November 5th, the uneasiness about not planning on voting was really wearing on me, and I was talking to a couple of friends about my indecision. And then, via FB chat, my friend Doug clenched it for me:
So I awoke on Tuesday, November 6th. My resolve from the night before was wearing off a little bit… I mean, c’mon. Stickers?
Before I got out of bed, I checked Facebook and Twitter on my phone. But this time, it wasn’t just Kristen. The vast majority of my friends posted something via social media urging me to vote. Linking to how to find your polling place, emphasizing the importance each vote has, or simply instructing/ordering/demanding: “VOTE!”
So, I couldn’t take it anymore. I got out of bed, scrounged for my voter’s registration card, and trekked the mile or two down the road to my polling place.
And I voted.
Within the span of 48 hours, social media was instrumental in changing my mind. I even tweeted about it:
“…I reveled in my first election day and proudly called attention to my ‘I Voted’ sticker.”
(But it’s okay… my friend Daniel helped me make my own!)